Sobolev inequality vs. Scarlet Rivera

Sobolev inequality

Oh good. Math. Well, you know I love math, even when I don’t understand it. My dad is a mathematician, and he liked to explain complex mathematical theorems to his young daughters in the hope that we would turn out to be prodigies. We didn’t, I’m afraid, so I can’t explain to you how Sobolev inequalities (or Sobolev spaces, for that matter) work, except that they are very important in differentiation, which is important because…it’s just important.

But here’s Sergei Sobolev, who came up with them. According to his Wikipedia page, his theorems now form the fundamentals of several areas of maths, like functional analysis. (I have a vague memory of functions from grade 12 calculus, which I was quite good at at the time. It helped that I had a stellar teacher. Hi Mr. Aliferis!) Unfortunately, Sobolev’s biography also states that he worked on the A-Bomb project in the USSR, which is definitely bad. Despite some of the great art that was inspired by the Cold War (Dr. Strangelove, for example), the threat of nuclear annihilation is definitely NOT a contender in the Tournament of Everything.

I’m giving myself a headache. Fine, just vote for the cheesy new age violinist. We’ll try this again tomorrow.

VS.

Scarlet Rivera

All right, it’s music vs. math. Even if you’re not the biggest Bob Dylan fan, I think it’s fair to say he’s one of the more influential musicians out there. So when he picks you to be his violin player on his album Desire and as a part of his memorable touring band Rolling Thunder Revue, you’ve gotta respect his taste. Scarlet Rivera filled that role. OK, so she might be into New Age music, but playing with the Duke Ellington Orchestra kinda cancels that out. The main thing here is that I can tell you very simply that Scarlet Rivera is a talented individual and you will grasp what I am saying. Whereas with Sobolev mathematics – “We study Sobolev embeddings in the Sobolev space $W^{1,p(\cdot)}(\Omega)$ with variable exponent satisfying $1\leqslant p(x) \leqslant n$” – nobody has a fucking clue what you’re talking about.

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Published in: on March 16, 2010 at 9:07 am  Leave a Comment  

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